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Wesley Richardson:  "Global warming: Belief will lead to relief"

RISING  temperatures are causing crop losses across America’s heartland and resulting in widespread famine throughout the country. The heat now makes vast areas of North America susceptible to tropical diseases such as treponematoses, malaria, and neurocysticercosis. The shifting wind and ocean currents as a result of the heat accelerate desertification and make violent weather commonplace in once temperate areas of the East Coast. 

Melting ice causes sea levels to rise and coastal areas of the United States to flood. As a result of food shortages and proliferation of disease, there are outbreaks of violence worldwide as society collapses and governments vainly attempt to contain the chaos. The culmination of these destructive forces leads to upheaval of society and destruction of mankind with as much as half of the world’s population perishing. 

While this account sounds like a page out of a science-fiction novel, this inconvenient truth is the future result of global warming. 

 Even today, as sea levels rise and temperatures climb, there are still those who believe global warming is a myth founded exclusively on the bias of corrupt politicians and misguided scientists. This belief is unfounded. Countless scientific studies, from all political and social backgrounds, have all reached the conclusion that global warming is occurring. 

Throughout its existence, Earth has cycled through periods of natural warming and cooling. “During ice ages, much of North America was covered in glaciers. Between ice ages, global temperatures have been as high as they are now,” claims environmental author Amy Farrar. This being stated, it is not a problem that the Earth warms and cools naturally. However, as Farrar states, “never in human history has Earth warmed up so quickly before and for such an extended period of time.” 

This anomaly in the natural cycle of Earth’s temperature is important because today is the first time that temperatures have been noted to remain above that of the natural cycles. Today’s temperature irregularities have the potential to cause problems similar to those listed above. Scientific evidence proving that global warming is occurring can be seen in the size of Antarctic ice sheets, which have shrunk by more than 2 million square kilometers since 1980. Sea levels are rising at a rate of 3.19 milimeters per year, compared with the 1870–2000 measurement of 1.70 mm per year, with the “20 warmest years having occurred since 1981 and with all 10 of the warmest years occurring in the past 12 years.” All of these points from NASA research point to the conclusion that global warming is occurring.

 Whether one believes global warming is caused by Earth or man, it cannot be denied. This truth may be hard to believe, but denial of a problem does not make it disappear. Belief is the first step in relief. Do not let scenarios in the introductory paragraphs become reality; believe, and help, to stop global warming now.

Wesley Richardson is a senior at Colonial Forge High School.

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